October 26th – National Mule Day

October 26, 2017 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning fans of crossbred equines. Today is Thursday, October 26, 2017. Today’s reasons to celebrate are:

National Mule Day

National Mule Day celebrates the importation of the first Spanish Jacks to the United States. They were a gift from King Charles III of Spain and were delivered on this date in 1785 in Boston.
One of the lesser-known annual observances that may not have made it onto your calendar, this holiday is designated to celebrate these unique hybrid animals. Mules are the offspring of a male donkey and a female horse and are more common than ‘hinnies’, the offspring of female donkeys and male horses.
Because donkeys and horses are actually different species with a different number of chromosomes, their offspring are nearly always sterile. The size of a mule is largely dependent upon the size of its mother. All kinds of horses are used to breed mules, and draft horses are a popular cross to create heavyweight mules.
Today, breeders create designer mules using pinto or Appaloosa horses. Mules are valued for bringing the best characteristics of horses and donkeys into one animal. They are said to be stronger, smarter and have better endurance than either of their parents and because of these characteristics, they are still valued work animals. In recent years, they have even been used by the United States military to transport equipment in mountainous regions of Afghanistan. Mule enthusiasts have adapted to a changing equine market, and mules are used as companions and pleasure riding animals. They can be found under saddle and in harness at horse shows and out on the trails.

National Day of the Deployed

National Day of the Deployed honors all of the brave men and woman who have been deployed, are sacrificing, or have sacrificed their lives to defend our country. The day also acknowledges their families who are separated from them during deployment and the sacrifices they make in order for their family members to serve our country and is observed annually on this date.
National Day of the Deployed was created by Shelle Michaels Aberle in 2006. Ms. Aberle approached then North Dakota Governor John Hoeven for support of a North Dakota Proclamation for the holiday. Governor Hoeven was the first governor in the United States to recognize deployed troops in a formal proclamation. The date of October 26 was chosen to honor LTC David Hosna, Ms. Aberle’s cousin, who was deployed to Iraq from Kaiserslautern, Germany at the time. October 26 is his birthday.
Grand Forks, North Dakota hosted the first event. The first units honored by this proclamation were: NDARNG 1-188th ADA SECFOR and JLENS deployed to Afghanistan. In 2011, Senator John Hoeven led the efforts and co-sponsored S.RES.295 for a national day to honor those soldiers deployed overseas and their families. On October 18, 2011, the resolution passed unanimously. In 2012, National Day of the Deployed was observed by all 50 states for the first time.

National Pumpkin Day

Oddly enough, National Pumpkin Day celebrates pumpkins. Pumpkins are a type of squash and are native to the Americas…though they can be grown on every continent except Antarctica. The oldest evidence of pumpkins dates back to somewhere between 7000 and 5500 BC to seeds found in Mexico. The word pumpkin originates from the Greek word “pepon”, which means “large melon”. However, before the Americans gave it its familiar name, it was known as ‘pompion‘ to the French, and then ‘pumpon‘ to the British.
The United States produces 1.5 billion pounds of pumpkins, with Illinois producing more than any other state. The current North American record holding pumpkin weighed in at 2,145-pounds and was grown by Gene McMullen of Streator, Illinois in 2015.  Although huge by any standard, the pumpkin is a couple of hundred pounds lighter than the current world record pumpkin. In 2014, a pumpkin weighing in at 2,323-pounds was grown in Switzerland and holds the world record.
Pumpkins are both delicious and decorative and, believe it or not, can be used in other ways besides pie filling and jack-o-lanterns. Pumpkin Soup, Pumpkin Bread, Pumpkin Cake, Pumpkin Muffins, Pumpkin Cheesecake, and, of course, Pumpkin Spice Latte and other drinks are perennial favorites.
And, humans aren’t the only species that can enjoy and benefit from pumpkins. Canned pumpkin puree may be recommended by veterinarians as a dietary supplement for dogs and cats that are experiencing certain digestive ailments, and raw pumpkin can be fed to poultry as a supplement to their regular feed during the winter months to help with egg production.

Mince Meat Day

Mincemeat dates back to medieval times. Mincemeat is a mixture of minced (or chopped up) meats, suet, and fruits. The meat is usually finely chopped or ground beef. Fruits include raisins, apples, pears, and others. Sometimes liquor is added, most commonly brandy or rum. It was a way to preserve food. It was also a treat, mixed with sweet fruits. Somewhere in the early 1900’s, it lost its popularity. A whole generation has grown up, not knowing what it is, or having ever tasted it. Today, it is most often served as Mincemeat Pie. Over the years, the amount of meat in the recipes was reduced. In older recipes, you will find meat and/or suet among the ingredients. In more modern recipes, mincemeat contains no meat at all and is largely a fruity pie. It remains a traditional pie served by many families during the holiday season.

More Holidays

On This Date   

  • In 1774 – The First Continental Congress of the United States adjourned in Philadelphia.
  • In 1825 – The Erie Canal opened in upstate New York. The 363-mile canal connected Lake Erie and the Hudson River at a cost of $7,602,000. Construction began in 1817. The canal was used to ship goods in a time when it was cheaper and more effective to transport them through the waterways. Since the 1990’s, the canal had been primarily used for recreational purposes.
  • In 1863 – The Football (Soccer) Association was formed. The world’s oldest governing football (soccer) body was created at the Freemasons’ Tavern in London. The foundation was instrumental in creating and formalizing rules of the game. Before this, every area and organization playing football (soccer) made their own rules.
  • In 1858 – H.E. Smith patented the rotary-motion washing machine.
  • In 1881 – The “Gunfight at the OK Corral” took place in Tombstone, AZ. The fight was between Wyatt Earp, his two brothers and Doc Holiday and the Ike Clanton Gang.
  • In 1905 – Norway gained independence from Sweden.
  • In 1944 – During World War II, the Battle of Leyte Gulf ended. The battle was won by American forces and brought the end of the Pacific phase of World War II into sight.
  • In 1947 – The Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir joined India. Hari Singh, the last ruler of the princely state, signed the Instrument of Accession to join the Dominion of India, in return for protection from the Indian military.
  • In 1949 – President Harry Truman raised the minimum wage from 40 to 75 cents an hour.
  • In 1951 – Winston Churchill became the prime minister of Great Britain.
  • In 1955 – New York City’s “The Village Voice” was first published.
  • In 1958 – Pan American Airways flew its first Boeing 707 jetliner from New York City to Paris.
  • In 1962 – The Soviet Union made an offer to end the Cuban Missile Crisis by taking their missile bases out of Cuba if the United States agreed to not invade Cuba and would remove Jupiter missiles in Turkey.
  • In 1970 – “Doonesbury,” the comic strip by Gary Trudeau, premiered in 28 newspapers across the America.
  • In 1972 – National security adviser Henry Kissinger declared, “Peace is at hand” in Vietnam.
  • In 1975 – Anwar Sadat became the first Egyptian president to officially visit the United States.
  • In 1977 – The experimental space shuttle Enterprise successfully landed at Edwards Air Force Base in California.
  • In 1979 – South Korean President Park Chung-hee was assassinated by Kim Jae-kyu, the head of the Korean Central Intelligence Agency.
  • In 1980 – Israeli President Yitzhak Navon became the first Israeli head of state to visit Egypt.
  • In 1984 – Baby Fae received a heart from a baboon. She was the first infant to receive an organ from another species. Born on October 14, 1984, with a rare congenital heart defect, the surgery was performed by Dr. Leonard L. Bailey at Loma Linda University Medical Center in California. While the operation was successful, Baby Fae’s body rejected the heart, and she died a few weeks later.
  • In 1988 – Roussel Uclaf, a French pharmaceutical company, announced it was halting the worldwide distribution of RU-486. The pill is used to induce abortions. The French government made the company reverse itself two days later.
  • In 1988 – Two whales were freed by Soviet and American icebreakers. The whales had been trapped for nearly 3 weeks in an Arctic ice pack.
  • In 1990 – The State Department issued a warning that terrorists could be planning an attack on a passenger ship or aircraft.
  • In 1991 – Former Washington Mayor Marion Barry arrived at a federal correctional institution in Petersburg, VA, to begin serving a six-month sentence for cocaine possession.
  • In 1993 – Deborah Gore Dean was convicted of 12 felony counts of defrauding the United States government and lying to Congress. Dean was a central figure in the Reagan-era HUD scandal.
  • In 1996 – Federal prosecutors cleared Richard Jewell as a suspect in the Olympic Park bombing.
  • In 1998 – A French lab found a nerve agent on an Iraqi missile warhead.
  • In 2001 – It was announced that Fort Worth’s Lockheed Martin won a defence contract for $200 billion over 40 years. The contract, for the “joint strike fighter,” was the largest defence contract in history.
  • In 2001 – The Patriot Act went into effect in the United States. Signed into law by President George W. Bush as a result of the September 11, 2001, attacks. The act is known for uniting and strengthening America by providing the appropriate tools required to intercept and obstructing terrorism. The act gave security agencies more power to deal with terrorists and terrorist activities and made it easier for them to monitor and investigate people suspected of aiding and abetting acts of terrorism. It has been criticized for its detrimental effect on civil liberties.
  • In 2002 – Russian authorities pumped a gas into a theater where separatist rebels held over 800 hostages. The gas killed 116 hostages and all 50 hostage-takers were killed by the gas or gunshot wounds.

Noteworthy Birthdays

If you were born on this date, Happy Birthday. You share your birthday with the following list of illustrious individuals – and about 20-million other people.

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